Dao Wine Region Guide

Uncover the true essence of Dao wine country with our expert guide, as you savor each sip of its exquisite wines


Last updated: December 9, 2023


Dão is an intriguing region: these vineyards, once responsible for tough and uncompromising red wines, have recently undergone a dramatic image change. In the 20th century, rustic cooperatives dominated local production – quality was not a major priority for these state-backed enterprises. Indeed, very few buyers and sommeliers could sing the praises of such astringent reds, with enough tannin to fill a tea factory. But, as elsewhere, major investment allied to an influx of younger talent has propelled Dão to the ranks of first-division wine producer.

So what can you expect today? A great deal, as it turns out, the new faces now make structured, elegantly fruity, perfumed reds and textured whites. Expressive aromas, freshness, and minerality typify the best wines of Dão, a state of affairs that would have been unthinkable 30 years ago. Thankfully, the number of independent wineries continues to grow, producing bottles for every price point and occasion. Without question, Dão is on the up.


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James lawrence

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